Domestic Violence in the United States

Abstract

Domestic violence, a combination of crimes that have been perpetrated for centuries is a big concern today to the American society. The government acknowledges that the scope of domestic violence is wide as there are different forms of crimes that are termed as domestic. Example of these home abuse includes sexual, verbal, physical, and emotional abuses. According to National statistics on Domestic violence women and children form the majority of the domestic violence. Domestic violence has an adverse impact on the victims such as mental, physical, sexual and reproductive health effects such as unintended pregnancies, miscarriage, hypertension, post-traumatic disorder, anxiety, nutritional deficiency, stress disability, and mental illnesses. The government has made an initiative to sensitize the society about the various forms of domestic violence, the impact it has on the society and the steps that can be taken to reduce domestic violence crimes.

Domestic Violence in the U.S

Domestic violence has been defined as violence that happens within a domestic relationship. Today, people lack adequate information about domestic violence and confuse it with physical abuse. According to Kishor and Johnson (2004), Physical abuse is a small section of domestic violence, and there are many different types of violence that people experience in their residence. Other forms of home violence include Psychological (emotional), financial, verbal and sexual abuse. Physical abuse includes beatings such as slapping, choking, poisoning, use of weapons. Verbal abuse includes yelling or shouting, constant blame, verbal humiliation or making fun or laughter at someone. Emotional or psychological violence involves intimidation, lack of affection, stalking, cyberbullying, social media bullying. Isolation where one is denied the freedom to move, interact and engage with other people. Financial abuse is where one takes advantage of resources without an agreement with the other partner. Coercive and controlling behaviors are some of the ways that people use to frighten and manipulate others. These are some of the major constituents of domestic violence in the United States.

Domestic violence has been termed as a serious health issue for women in particular in the United States. Financial, physical, psychological and sexual abuse are some of the violations that women experience. Both the males and females experience domestic violence. The statistics show that although there is a decline in the cases of domestic abuse in children and women, however, significant numbers are indicating the prevalence of domestic abuse. The U.S national government show concern by setting up a structure that protects people against home violence (Akoensi et al., 2013). The law enforcing agencies, the justice system, and the health care system are some of the government departments that are actively concerned with domestic violence.

According to Sumner et al. (2015), there are approximately 20 people in the U.S who are physically abused per minute by an intimate partner according to the National statistics on Domestic violence. 1 in 9 men and 1 in 4 women experience physical, sexual or intimate partner stalking that lead to contracting sexually transmitted illness, employing of victim services, physical injuries, fear, and post-traumatic stress disorder/ depression. The national statistics of calls they are placed to the domestic violence hotlines in a typical day are more than 20,000. According to Straus, Gelles & Steinmetz (2017) 15% of the national violent crime results from intimate partner’s violence. The statistics show that 1 in 5 women and 1 in 70 men in the U.S have experienced rape in their lifetime. A total population of 24.4 million which include 5.1 million men and 19.3 million ladies in the U.S have been stalked in their lifetime. Homicide cases that are linked to domestic violence account for about 20%.

Noticing some forms of abuses is hard. Domestic abuse has disturbing implications on the victims and the perpetrators. There are economic, social and health impacts of domestic violence. Physical and mental effects have far much-reaching effects. Individuals that are sexually abused are at risk of contracting sexually transmitted illnesses, injuries and stress. Physically violated individuals suffer from injuries, stress, and depression. Psychological and emotional abuse leads to stress and depression which may lead to suicidal behaviors. Domestic violence has been linked with mental, physical, sexual and reproductive health effects such as unintended pregnancies, miscarriage, hypertension, post-traumatic disorder, anxiety, nutritional deficiency, stress disability and mental illnesses (Straus, Gelles & Steinmetz, 2017). Domestic violence victims are at a higher risk of developing substance abuse in the process.

Besides the health-related impacts, economic impacts are part of the consequences. A total of 8 million workdays each year are lost by victims of domestic violence. The cost of home abuse exceeds $8 billion each year. An estimated 50% of victims lose their jobs because of reasons emanating from the violence. One hundred forty-two murders of women at the workplace were reported between 2003 and 2008 which shows the extent to which domestic relationship violence can have a detrimental impact on society (Sumner et al., 2015). The social implications of any form of abuse are that people become less interactive because of the fear inflicted. Abused individuals will tend to keep to themselves most of the term. Care providers refer to the condition as a withdrawal that may lead to loneliness, stress, depression, drug abuse, and suicide.

Victims of domestic violence seek help in law enforcing agencies and primary care setting. Routine preventive care and treatment are some of the aid that victims seek from institutions that are set in the society. Domestic abuse result in medical problems both physical and mental, it makes sense when the society involve doctors in identification and intervention the stage of the effects. No standard medical procedure has been developed to help victims of domestic violated individuals. However, different bodies such as American Medical Association, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Center for Disease Control and the American Nurses Association have all advocated for screening (Straus, Gelles & Steinmetz, 2017). These bodies recognize the importance of inquiring about physical, sexual, and psychological abuse as part of medical history. Different kinds of physicians are involved in intervening for the victims. Physical impacts such as injuries are treated by general physicians however mental conditions resulting from abuse such as stress and depression require a qualified psychiatrist.

According to Wilt & Olson (1996), women and children form part of the large population that experience domestic abuse. The government is particularly concerned about the living conditions of children especially those that are suspected to be experiencing domestic abuse. Children victims of domestic violence are at a higher risk of future adverse impacts. Stress, depression, suicidal thoughts, hostile behaviors, drug use, physical injuries, and skipping schools are common characteristics of children facing domestic abuse. The government has a responsibility of protecting kids from home abuse. The standard remedy for children victims includes counseling and protective custody. The victim is first drawn from the hostile environment and posted in protective custody in a relatives place or a government institution. It is through this way that the authorities keep the children from their abusers. After that, the victims are allocated a counseling expert who helps them recover emotionally from the traumatic situation.

The perpetrators of domestic violence are held liable for personal behaviors. When aligned in court these individuals are charged depending on the magnitude of their crime. The government has ways of dealing with home violence criminals. Domestic violence cases that are related to murder and rape may fall under capital offense which results in a long-term lockup. Others such as verbal abuse may result in incarceration which is a short-period behind bars. Rehabilitation is done to individuals who are tested and found that they are mentally ill. When perpetrators are found to be mentally ill, the government send them into psychiatrist hospitals where they are locked up until they are proven to be all right. The government take domestic violence seriously and that the standard punishment is a jail term. Government counseling program to help perpetrators with the abusive behaviors include an intensive program that is lengthy. The comprehensive program holds the abusers accountable for their abusive choices and character. The program also aims at addressing the root causes and belief system that attribute to the abusive behavior. The program also challenges the perpetrators to adjust personal attitudes and behaviors with the aim of preventing violence from re-occurring in the future (Breiding, Chen, & Black, 2014).

Domestic violence is a term with a broad scope. The crimes under the phrase are extensive, and most people do not understand when they are being abused until it has gone too far. The authorities both federal and state have made it their responsibility to educate the society about domestic violence. One of the most used methods of educating the society includes the use of schools, and the media especially television. The government provides the systems that educate, protect and provide health care to people about domestic violence. The authorities urge people to report cases of domestic violence to help minimize the overwhelming problem that has faced the society for a long time. The immediate environment impacts human personality. It is said that if a person exists in a violent background, they are likely to become violent. It is one of the most crucial fact that the government takes into consideration when educating people about domestic violence (Breiding, Chen, & Black, 2014). The sole aim of domestic violence education is to teach the society of the different forms of domestic abuses and steps that can be taken to prevent abuse or steps taken after abuse has happened.

Domestic violence has been defined as a situation where one person systematically violates the rights of another to acquire control or power in a domestic relationship (Breiding, Chen, & Black, 2014). Domestic violence a topic that covers a whole lot of abuses that are experienced in American society. Emotional, physical, sexual, emotional, financial and verbal abuse are some of the standard parts of domestic violence that are experienced in America each day (Kishor and Johnson, 2004).

References

Akoensi, T. D., Koehler, J. A., Lösel, F., & Humphreys, D. K. (2013). Domestic violence perpetrator programs in Europe, Part II: A systematic review of the state of the evidence. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 57(10), 1206-1225.

Breiding, M. J., Chen, J., & Black, M. C. (2014). Intimate partner violence in the United States–2010.

Kishor, S., & Johnson, K. (2004). Profiling domestic violence: a multi-country study.

Straus, M. A., Gelles, R. J., & Steinmetz, S. K. (2017). Behind closed doors: Violence in the American family. Routledge.

Sumner, S. A., Mercy, J. A., Dahlberg, L. L., Hillis, S. D., Klevens, J., & Houry, D. (2015). Violence in the United States: status, challenges, and opportunities. Jama, 314(5), 478-488.

Wilt, S., & Olson, S. (1996). Prevalence of domestic violence in the United States. JAMWA, 51(3), 77-82.

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